Ferrari files Targa Top patent

Ferrari files Targa Top patent

Luxury sportscar manufacturer, Ferrari, has filed a patent with the European Patent Office for a new Targa removable roof system. This 'Targa Top' design could signal a potential return to the body style for the Italian carmaker after a 20-year hiatus.

The patent application refers to “a car with a ‘Targa Top’ body” that features a “coupé body with a rigid roof that is removable and is supported at the front by the upright of the windshield and at the rear by a robust, full-width roll bar”.

The Targa top style that Ferrari refers to is similar to that currently used by Porsche on the 911, but the new patent refers to the specific design and engineering involved. It proposes decreasing the aerodynamic turbulence associated with Targa tops by increasing the height of the windscreen upright, with a possible false insert that is installed when the roof is removed.

Ferrari claims that a Targa-style production car of its design would be “free from the aforementioned drawbacks” as well as being “easy and inexpensive to manufacture.”

Although it’s not known yet whether an existing Ferrari model will benefit from the new removable roof design, the patent drawings illustrate an old F430 for reference. That mid-engined V8 model is a predecessor to the 488 GTB.

The 355 GTS from the 1995-1999 time period was the last Targa-style Ferrari in mass production, although limited-run models such as the 575 Superamerica and LaFerrari Aperta were produced in small quantities since that car. A Targa-topped 488 would sit alongside the existing GTB and Spider convertible in the range, expanding a line-up that makes up a significant proportion of Ferrari’s annual sales.

Lawrence Allan

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